The Veracity Report

Tampon Shortage

You Can’t Make This Up, We Have a Tampon Shortage

A pharmacist with 16 years in the business, working for Avenue Chemists, a small pharmacy in Queens, New York, said she’s never – ever — seen a tampon shortage

Tampon Shortage

We haven’t either, and we’re a lot older than 16.

A woman, who asked not to be identified for personal safety reasons said that last Friday, when she looked to wholesalers to resupply the store’s stock of tampons, every brand except Tampax Pearl was on backorder.

She went on to tell BI that the store has struggled to order everything from DayQuil to MiraLax since the pandemic started, but this is new.

“We use two companies and both of them are showing signs of backorder,” the woman was quoted as saying.

Yes, this means there’s yet another shortage. Even the largest retail pharmacy chains such as Walgreens and CVS confirmed they too are having serious issues filling their shelves with certain products.

In an interview with USA Today, Walgreens representatives who also requested to remain anonymous in that interview admitted that its stores are experiencing disruptions with tampon products.

Target and CVS also confirmed as much to Business Insider.

“Similar to other retailers, we are experiencing some temporary brand-specific shortages in certain geographies,” of tampons, Walgreens told BI via email. Though they were also quick to add that consumers were only likely to experience issues purchasing certain brands.

CVS said something similar, noting that, “in recent weeks, there have been instances when suppliers have not been able to fulfill the full quantities of orders placed,” and that the company tries to restock locations when they run out of products.

Target said via email it has a “wide variety” of products available online and in stores and it is working to procure more in areas where stock is more limited.

Time Magazine reported Tuesday that they have found instances of people discussing online issues with buying tampons since April. It’s the “supply chain problem no one’s talking about,” the magazine wrote.

Procter & Gamble, which owns Tampax, has said the problem is getting access to raw materials, CNN Business reported. The war in Ukraine, demand for PPE, and a drought in Texas have made it harder to access those things, such as cotton and plastic, the outlet noted.

Noticeably, none of these sources casts any responsibility for the shortages, supply chain issues, or dramatically increasing costs on the current administration or its policies.

Another issue few people are talking about is a significant increase in demand for these feminine hygiene products. There are various speculated reasons for this sudden and unexpected surge in demand, but perhaps the most humorous was posed by Proctor & Gamble spokesperson Cheri McMaster during an interview with Time Magazine.

In that interview, McMaster basically placed the onus for the unexpected 7.7% increase in demand over the past two firmly on an aggressive advertising campaign launched by the company a couple of years ago which featured now 41-year-old, actor-comedian Amy Schumer. Schumer, who starred as the company’s spokesperson for an aggressive and extremely popular series of advertisements that aired in 2020, and which were meant to normalize the conversation surrounding menstrual health.

Since those ads aired, McMasters said, “retail sales growth has exploded.” To substantiate her claim, in April of this year, P&G reported: “its biggest quarterly sales gain in decades.” Further, during the company’s recent earnings call, it was disclosed that P&G was facing difficulty in sourcing raw materials for feminine care products, as well as getting them shipped across the country.

Coming on the heels of a nationwide baby food shortage, and an ongoing semi-conductor, microchip shortage, this is not good news for Americans, when prices for virtually all things are significantly higher than they were just a year ago.

In another interview with Time magazine, Sheng Lu, professor in the Department of Fashion and Apparel Studies at the University of Delaware, had this to say: “Tampons are a staple product—a life necessity. If you look at the pricing strategy for the big players, they will consider more price increases for these necessary products.”

There’s little doubt that this is exactly what these companies will do, joining the ranks of the food industry, the grocery industry, the lumber industry, the insurance industry, the consumer loan industry, the fast-food industry, the oil industry, and pretty much every other American industry over the past year, in an effort to maintain their profit margins against massive tax and cost hikes.